August 31, 2018
It’s important to take a look at your home and property to get it ready for the upcoming seasonal changes. Some things need to be done monthly, others quarterly and biannually, and some annually.
Many are best done during the beginning of a season change, but they are all designed to keep your home operating at energy-saving levels that save you money on repairs and upkeep.
Forsaking these home maintenance chores could mean disaster down the road. Investing in routine maintenance, on the other hand, will pay you back by ensuring dependable air-conditioning, plumbing, and electrical service throughout the year.
8 Energy-Saving Hacks
- Schedule annual professional maintenance. If you haven’t had your HVAC, electrical, or plumbing systems inspected by a professional in the last year, it’s a good idea to schedule your maintenance now, before the summer heat arrives. If you are considering replacing any of your expensive appliances, update old equipment with newer, more energy efficient models to lower energy costs.
- Upgrade to a programmable or smart thermostat to set a cooling schedule that saves you money and energy. Some smart thermostats even allow you to change the settings remotely.
- Seal air leaks around the home, including air ducts, doors, windows, and around where utilities enter the home. Use weatherproof caulk for gaps less than ¼ inch and expandable foam spray for any gaps larger than that. To seal your air ducts completely, you will need to call a duct sealing company, but you can seal exposed ductwork with mastic sealant or aluminum foil tape (NOT duct tape!).
- Consider upgrading appliances and older equipment with more energy-efficient models, such as ENERGY STAR products.
- Inspect your roof. You will want to pay special attention to your roof and chimney this spring. Upcoming storms are bound to create a water infiltration problem if you don’t annually inspect your roof. Instead of getting on your roof, you can conduct a basic inspection using a pair of binoculars. Look for loose and cracked shingles, rust spots on flashing, worn areas around your vent pipes and chimney, and large areas of moss or lichen. If you notice any signs of aging or deterioration, contact a professional roofing company that is licensed, bonded, and insured.
- Inspect and clean gutters and downspouts. If you don’t remember the last time you cleaned your gutters, now’s the time to do so. It’s likely that there is a lot of grime, sediment, and debris left over from past seasons. Take out your ladder, put on your work gloves, and head outside.
- Scoop out any large debris from the gutter.
- After removing the big stuff, run a garden hose up and down your gutters to remove the rest and pay
- attention to where water is overflowing or leaking.
- Unclog downspouts if they are blocked.
- Readjust spikes or hangers if the water is not adequately flowing to the downspout.
- If you have gutters that are loose, instead of using spikes or ferrules, consider using fascia hanger
- Read the gutter repair guide from Family Handyman.
- Conserve water. There are hundreds of ways to save water at home, including taking shorter showers, inspecting plumbing for leaks, and more. Learn 100+ ways to save water in every area of your home.
- Upgrade your lighting. Newer, more energy-efficient LED bulbs can dramatically reduce your electricity bill. Another quick energy-saving life hack is to unplug electronics when not in use (even when not in use, electrical devices still use electricity whenever plugged in). Power strips allow you to easily toggle power on and off.
Keep your home in great shape all year long by remembering a few simple maintenance chores throughout the year.
Contact Service Champions for help saving money and energy. From HVAC and energy efficiency upgrades to tankless water heaters and attic insulation, we know the best ways to go green and save green.